So my husband had surgery to repair his torn Achilles tendon last Friday. Right before they wheeled him in, I said, “Uh, we don’t have crutches.” They assured me they’d get him out to the car after surgery. At which point I had to cop to the fact that I had assumed free crutches were part of the tendon repair service. “You don’t have crutches in the car?” they asked, in the same tone one might ask if someone didn’t like chocolate. Or wine. Or kitten snuggling.
Anyway. NOPE, no crutches. No scooter. No nothing.
So while my beloved was under the knife, I raced out of the ambulatory surgery facility to rent a knee scooter and get crutches, a task I accomplished in 37 minutes flat because I didn’t want to be the wife who was MIA when the doctor wanted to tell her how the surgery went. It went great, by the way. A few fibers of tendon hanging on made the repair very “routine.” So yay!
Anyway, that whole “You don’t have crutches?” moment got me thinking because it’s not the first time I’ve learned this lesson: BE YOUR OWN ADVOCATE. Make the calls. Ask the questions. Get yourself ready. Don’t wait for the information to be delivered to you mama-bird style. It’s so strange. It’s like some sort of paralysis comes over me when I think someone knows more about how something works than I do. Doctors, editors, publishers, bosses of all sorts, hair stylists, it’s nuts. They are the “professionals” so I think they know more about my body, my story, my hair, my everything than I do. And just to really drive my fatal flaw home, another time I thought a medical professional knew more than I did, I walked around hemorrhaging for six weeks after childbirth. Yeah. That. Still shaking my head over that one.
You know what else? When I tutored SAT prep to already over-scheduled teenagers who needed more homework like they needed a throat punch, I tried to inspire them by saying, “You want it? You gotta go get it.” That pretty much applies to SAT/ACT scores and everything else in life, including finishing books. YOU know what you need. YOU can make it happen better than anyone. Your new comfort zone? It’s waiting right over there.
Go get it.
Last week, I had the power to make a phone call, get some crutch info, and calmly sit in the waiting room reading a book during Ben’s surgery…and I gave that power away because I waited for somebody to tell me what to do. I’m being hard on myself. I always am. But it’s true. I gave power away when it would have been easier to keep it. To be power-FULL.
Something to think about for next time.
PS: For anyone who needs to keep weight off a foot, I HIGHLY recommend the knee scooter. $75-ish a month! Mostly covered by my insurance ! Fascinating to cats!